Parshat Ki Teitzei
This week's parsha contains 74 of the Torah's 613 commandments, some disturbing from a modern perspective (how a man may ultimately marry a beautiful prisoner of war); others, oddly obscure (you must send away a mother bird from her nest before taking the eggs of her young). And then there are those that remain as relevant now as they were then (treating debtors with dignity; keeping your vows). This photo, of a Tallit (prayer shawl) I bought in the Cardo in Jerusalem, represents the following commandment regarding the wearing of the tassels called Tzitzit: "You shall make yourself twisted threads, on the four corners of your garment with which you cover yourself...". This is another example of the beauty and power of Jewish mindfulness, that which requires you to humbled by and aware of G-d and G-d's laws in all ways and at all times. Ki Teitzei ends with a dramatic message about the significance of our collective Jewish memory, and how essential it has always been--and will always be--for Jewish survival. "You shall remember what Amalek did to you on the way, when you went out of Egypt...You shall not forget!" Shabbat Shalom!